Just For Today
A Daily Approach to Prayer and Scripture
Thursday, October 23
“A man who has friends must himself be friendly.”
Pr 18:24 NKJV
STOP FIGHTING IN YOUR OWN STRENGTH
The level of friendship you get is determined by the level of friendship you give. Friendship requires sacrifice, commitment, time, and energy—things we’re reluctant to give. The truth is, many of us are uncomfortable letting people into our lives. We grew up in homes where intimacy was rarely expressed, communication was used as a form of control, and rules were more important than relationships. As a result we’re “relationally impaired.” That doesn’t mean we can’t make friends, it just means we may have a harder time doing it. When it comes to friendship, here are some truths you need to consider: (1) When two relationally impaired people get together they don’t solve each other’s problems, they double them. (2) Those in the fast lane to success may slow down long enough to speak to you in church or at the company picnic, but unless you’ve got something they need or want, don’t expect them to be available to you. (3) When you become less “needy,” you’ll become more attractive to others. As long as you’re looking for someone to solve all your problems and fill the hole in your soul, you’ll drive people away. People have their own struggles and dysfunctions; they’re not looking to take on yours. So what’s the answer? Spend time getting to know God through prayer and reading the Scriptures. Let Him tell you who you are and what you’re worth—something that can happen only when you spend time with Him. As you become spiritually and emotionally whole, you’ll begin to enjoy your own company—and you’ll have more to offer others.
Friday, October 24
“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”
Pr 17:17 NKJV
In life you’ll have many acquaintances, but few friends. And that’s okay, especially if you value quality over quantity. Just because you have good social skills doesn’t mean you’ll have good friends. Sometimes people who are “the life of the party” are the loneliest because they live with a core fear that says, “If you really knew me you wouldn’t want me.” Sadly, they’re often the ones who become workaholics and try to lose themselves in achievement. Or their unmet needs drive them into multiple affairs. Or they get into mood-altering substances that lead to addiction. In the parable of the prodigal son we read these words: “When he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in that land, and he began to be in want…and no one gave him anything” (Lk 15:14-16 NKJV). It’s time you reconsidered what true friendship is. It’s not what some of your business buddies spout when they vent their ego concerning their latest success. If you read between the lines, chances are what they’re really saying is, “See how wonderful I am. And as long as you’re in my league you can be my friend.” That’s fickle! “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” In Old Testament times friends entered into a covenant by exchanging a shoe and a sword. The shoe meant, “I’ll go to wherever you are and I’ll stand with you.” The sword meant, “I’ll fight for you and lay down my life for you.” The question is: Are you willing to become that kind of friend?